23 October

Global: Global coronavirus infections have passed 41.7 million cases, reaching 41,713,314. The global coronavirus death toll is 1,137,410 according to researchers at Johns Hopkins University.

Europe: Daily Covid-19 cases are hitting records around Europe, including new highs in Hungary, Romania, Luxembourg, Netherlands and Greece. In France, authorities will expand a curfew to more regions, with 46 million people ordered to stay at home from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. starting Friday at midnight, as hospitalizations and deaths climb.

US: Covid-19 infections exceed 8.4 million, meanwhile, the US coronavirus death toll is 223,051 according to researchers at Johns Hopkins University.

Trump and Biden sparred over the coronavirus pandemic in the final presidential debate, with the president defending his response to a pandemic that has already claimed 223,000 American lives.

The Trump administration’s botched response to the pandemic has led to between 130,000 and 210,000 preventable deaths, according to a new report from a team of disaster preparedness and public health experts.

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Utah reported a record 1,613 cases as Governor Gary Herbert warned that the medical system is near or at capacity. Texas is sending almost 500 medics, nurses and other personnel to the worst of the state’s hot spots in El Paso.

New Jersey logged 1,182 new cases, for its fifth straight day surpassing 1,000 among the daily data that Governor Phil Murphy called “not pretty” at a Trenton news conference.

Florida posted 5,558 new Covid-19 cases Thursday, the most since mid-August, excluding two days affected by technical issues.

The US Food and Drug Administration has approved the first drug to treat Covid-19: remdesivir, an antiviral medicine given through an IV for patients needing hospitalization.

A trial found that infusing hospitalized Covid-19 patients with blood plasma from people who had recovered had no effect on whether they got sicker or died, Stat reports, citing a study published in the medical journal BMJ. An earlier study by the Mayo Clinic showed some benefit, leading the FDA to give the therapy emergency approval in August, but that trial didn’t have a control arm, the report said.

India: India added 54,366 Covid cases in a day, government data showed. The number of confirmed cases in the south Asian country stands at 7.71 million as of 7:30 a.m. Mumbai, according to data collected by Johns Hopkins University and Bloomberg News.

France: French health authorities reported another 41,622 confirmed Covid-19 cases over 24 hours on Thursday, an all-time daily high.

Bulgaria: Bulgaria reported a new daily record of 1,595 new cases as the number of hospitalized is also at its highest.

Iran: The number of confirmed cases in the coronavirus outbreak in Iran stands at 550,757 as of 6:30am Tehran, according to data collected by Johns Hopkins University and Bloomberg News. The number of fatalities in Iran is 31,650.

Canada: A total of 58 people have tested positive for Covid-19 at an Olymel pork processing plant in the Canadian province of Quebec, but the plant remains fully operational, spokesman Richard Vigneault said on Thursday.

South Korea: South Korea reports 155 new coronavirus cases in 24 hours versus 119 a day earlier, according to data from the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency. That was the biggest increase in more than six weeks.

Mexico: Mexico reported 6,612 new Covid-19 cases, bringing the total to 874,171, according to data released by the Health Ministry Thursday night. Deaths rose 479 to 87,894.

Philippines: The Philippines reported fewer coronavirus cases this week amid a slowdown in testing, with the Red Cross suspending most of its Covid-19 operations after it wasn’t paid by the state health insurer.

Vaccine news

Brazil: President Jair Bolsonaro stepped up criticism of a Chinese vaccine being developed in partnership with a renowned research institute in Brazil, saying the Asian country lacks credibility to come up with solutions for the coronavirus crisis.

US: vaccine advisers questioned whether safety and efficacy standards set by Food and Drug Administration officials were high enough to warrant emergency authorization of a shot.

Lockdown updates

Australia: Australia will slightly lift the cap on the number of citizens and permanent residents allowed to return each week, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Friday, as local Covid-19 cases slow to single digits.

US: Chicago will implement a night-time curfew for non-essential businesses starting on Friday for at least two weeks to try to stop the rapid rise in coronavirus cases and hospitalizations, Mayor Lori Lightfoot said, calling it a “critical inflection point” for the city.

Greece: Greece will impose a curfew in areas most affected by Covid-19, including Athens. The prime minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said movement would be banned from Saturday between 12.30am and 5am in locations deemed high-risk.

UK: The Canary Islands, the Maldives, Denmark and Mykonos were added to England’s travel corridor list. Travellers from those destinations will no longer need to self-isolate for 14 days from 4am on Sunday 25 October. The opposite is true for travellers arriving from Liechtenstein, which was removed from the list.

France: France extended a night-time curfew to more regions, affecting two-thirds of the French population. The prime minister Jean Castex said the 9pm-6am curfew would be extended to 38 departments and some overseas territories for six weeks, starting from midnight on Friday.

Italy: Italy’s government may enact a curfew as early as 9 pm nationally, possibly within seven days, if current virus trends are unchecked, Corriere della Sera reported Friday.

Poland: The Polish government wants elderly people to leave their homes only to do shopping or see doctors, Wirtualna Polska website reports, without citing anyone. Also, young people up to 16 years old will be banned from leaving their homes without an adult from 9 am to 3 pm.

Singapore: and Germany have agreed to start a reciprocal green lane that allows for travel for business or official reasons, according to a joint statement.

Economy updates

Europe: The EU’s flagship Covid-19 recovery cash will come late -diplomat. States hit hardest by the pandemic will have to wait longer for €750bn meant to help restart their economies, a senior diplomat said, as a fresh rise in infections shuts down business on the continent again.

Sweden: The Swedish Central Bank Reveals Grim View of Latest Covid Trend. The Riksbank governor, Stefan Ingves, fears the economic outlook is deteriorating amid signs the coronavirus pandemic is tightening its grip across Europe, and ensnaring Sweden again too.

Wales: Supermarkets in Wales to sell only essentials during lockdown. They will not be allowed to sell items such as clothing and hardware during the Covid-19 firebreak lockdown, first minister Mark Drakeford said, to ensure a “level playing field” as many retailers will be forced to shut.